Wednesday, 13 January 2016

The Premier League - a Manchester United supporter's view

What I've written below is my view, I appreciate it's not everyone's view. Feel free to reply but please, don't abuse or I won't publish the reply.

I hugely enjoyed the match last night, 12th Jan, v Newcastle - it was exciting, it was fun, there were lots of goals and I was totally engaged. Maybe it's a mindset that comes with age but I now take each match on its merit rather than constantly looking at what it may mean in the long term.

Man Utd supporters were spoiled for years, we had a manager in SAF who was a one-off, a freak. No manager, in the last 20 years, has dominated in any league in the world for as long, or as consistently, as SAF. He was ours and we were privileged to have him.

I remember when Abramovich, then Mourinho, arrived at Chelsea - supporters of other clubs were engulfed by despair, no-one could see how any PL team could ever win the PL again. Of course that wasn't how it worked out.

Then Sheikh Mansour, with a seemingly bottomless well (pun intended) of money arrived at City - a City supporter actually said to me, after their first PL win in 2012, that City would 'dominate the PL and CL for 20 yrs or more'. That hasn't happened, either, and I don't believe it will.

In my view the days of one team dominating the PL are gone, probably never to return. The huge increase in PL revenue has levelled the playing field to a great extent and I, for one, am not disappointed by that. It makes for a more exciting season and that can only be good for the PL and football in general.

Now supporters of clubs, and clubs themselves, are constantly searching for the 'New, new thing' in terms of managers, the one who'll deliver the magic bullet. I don't think that person exists. When Mourinho turned up at Chelsea again, their supporters were cock-a-hoop. We know how that ended and, for what it's worth, I believe Dr Carneiro was a symptom of the malaise, not the root of it. 

Mourinho, for whatever reason, couldn't handle the pressure. Guardiola, a good manager, took a sabbatical, needed time out, as did Klopp. In fact the only consistently successful manager over the last 20 years not to have time off, deliberately or not, was SAF. 

Since SAF retired I've seen articles by journalists and comments by supporters to the effect of 'Ferguson left the club in a bad place, he should have done this, that and the other'. I don't subscribe to that, at all. It was a great ride, I loved it all and I couldn't ever devalue those great memories by deriding SAF for what those who've never been in his position think he should have done.

So, for now, I'm realistic. I'll support the team, enjoy the good matches, take whatever positives I can find in the not so good ones and enjoy the ride.

Otherwise, what's the point?